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Dustin Hoffman a No-Show, But Sent Love via Audio to Israel-Hater

Dustin Hoffman was unable to attend their Gala, so the Muslim Public Affairs Council found another Jew to present the co-director of the anti-Israel propaganda film with their Media Award.
Dustin Hoffman sent a recorded congratulations to the filmmaker of "5 Broken Cameras" for the Muslim Public Affairs Council Gala on April 27, 2013

Dustin Hoffman sent a recorded congratulations to the filmmaker of "5 Broken Cameras" for the Muslim Public Affairs Council Gala on April 27, 2013

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Dustin Hoffman did not make it to the Muslim Public Affairs Council’s 22nd Annual Media Affairs Gala in Los Angeles this past Saturday night.  As reported in The Jewish Press, Hoffman was scheduled to present MPAC’s Media Award to Emad Burnat, the co-director of the Arab Palestinian propaganda film “5 Broken Cameras.”

That film is riddled with half-truths and full omissions, but because it fits the standard Hollywood position of “Israel bad, Arab Palestinians good,” its lack of veracity and documentary standards did not prevent it from being nominated this year for an Academy Award for “Best Documentary.”  At least it did not win.

But Dustin Hoffman seemed to be an odd choice as the presenter of the award on behalf of the Muslim Public Affairs Council – he is neither Muslim or Arab, nor is he Middle Eastern.  In fact, the only connection between Hoffman and either the movie “5 Broken Cameras” or the Arab-Israeli conflict – which is the topic of the film – is that he is Jewish.

Because Hoffman had – or so the story goes – “contracted a very serious virus,” he did not show up at the Gala Saturday night.  Perhaps someone with an actual yiddishe kupf advised Hoffman it may not be the best move of his career to appear in promotional pictures with the MPAC leader, Salam al-Marayati.

That’s because Salam al-Marayati tried to blame the 9/11 attacks on Israel and has lobbied the U.S. government to remove Hamas, Hezbollah and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad from its Foreign Terrorist Organization list.  Who knows how pictures of Hoffman at the MPAC Gala might have been used later to boost the legitimacy of MPAC.  “See? Dustin Hoffman – and everyone knows he’s a Jew! – loves us, we must be good.”

Hoffman’s taped message of congratulations to Burnat was played at the Gala, and MPAC posted it online.  Based on what he says in the brief message, Hoffman appears to have either watched the movie or at least read what it was about.  It also appears he made no effort to determine whether the film was a truthful documentary or a mere propaganda film.  This is the message Hoffman sent:

Hello, this is Dustin Hoffman.  I’m sorry that illness has made it impossible for me to be with you tonight, and that I am compelled to speak to you through this recorded message. I had been looking very forward [SIC] to being the one who, as a fellow artist, would present the award to Emad Burnat and “5 Broken Cameras,” a film he co-directed. It was for me a most powerful, moving and sometimes a very tender film and in it he demonstrates, I think, out of the texture of his own life experience, in the village of Bi’ilin, that his is, indeed, a voice of courage and conscience.  Courage and conscience – those are virtues so greatly needed for this troubled and confusing time.  Wherever we find them, they should be embraced and celebrated and that’s why I am so thrilled that “5 Broken Cameras” and Emad Burnat are being honored – it is so well deserved.  Emad, congratulations, and I hope to see you soon.  Thank you.

Courage and conscience?  Actually watching the film and making an effort to determine its veracity might warrant such weighty words.

But MPAC and Burnat, both of whom were probably disappointed that their opportunity to have a real live famous Jewish movie star pose for pictures with them, were not deterred. In fact, they had another Jew on hand to present the award. Quoting surah 3, ayahs 113-115, MPAC President Salam Al-Marayati introduced Rabbi Leonard Beerman, to present the award to Burnat.

The 91 year-old Beerman is on the J Street Advisory Council, was on the rabbinic cabinet of the Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace before it merged with J Street, and in 2009 signed a public letter opposing Israel’s policy in Gaza, which stated, in part,

 

As human beings, we are shocked and appalled at the mass destruction unleashed by the State of Israel against the people of Gaza in its military operation, following years of Israeli occupation, siege, and deprivation.

As Americans, we protest the carte blanche given Israel by the US government to pursue a war of “national honor,” “restoring deterrence,” “destroying Hamas,” and “searing Israel’s military might into the consciousness of the Gazans.

“My camera is a strong weapon and a strong witness,” Burnat said upon receiving the award.

“We should tell our stories before others hijack them. I got the idea to make this film from one of my friends who said ‘Why don’t you make a film about us, who live here? You know how it is to live under the pressure, under the army, under the occupation.’

“I did this film from my point of view, from my heart, from my mind. I’m very happy because the message was sent to the world, and everybody was shocked and moved by its story.”

No doubt especially shocked were the many members of the Israel Defense Forces who appear in the film which, they claim, was spliced and edited into such a distortion of reality that an organization which represents IDF members and alumni has asked the Israeli Attorney General’s office to bring charges of slander and incitement against the filmmakers.

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About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


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28 Responses to “Dustin Hoffman a No-Show, But Sent Love via Audio to Israel-Hater”

  1. Alexis Worlock says:

    How did someone as gullible, unthinking, and clearly unintelligent as this 91-year-old useful idiot ever make it through rabbinical school?

    And Dustin Hoffman–? No interest remains for me in ever seeing another movie in which he's featured. Feh.

  2. Y ou know, Alexis, this is particularly painful to me in that Dustin Hoffman is SO obviously Jewish and so much of his work as an actor has been so good (Ratzo Rizzo from Midnight Cowboy comes to mind as illustrative of his range as an artist). But, bottom line, the guy's a freaking idiot! Well, at least he was probably too ashamed (or conflicted) to have fulfilled his live role in this Kabuki theater agitprop arranged by terrorists. I guess that is about all that might be said of the guy at this point.

  3. Arie's Pragmatic Politics says:

    It's the paid kapos of the george "the time [I] helped the nazis kill Jews was the happiest time of [my] life" soros owned 'j'udenrein street. You expect less?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ2U6Rl98PM

  4. Sharon Marks Altshul says:

    Does Rabbi Beerman know Hebrew? Maybe he would appreciate what I saw and recorded with MY little video camera! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1b5AeKepOeQ in an Israeli home that was destroyed by Hamas rocket.

  5. Cody Flecker says:

    As Jews become more and more Americanized, they forget more and more their Judaism, until they feel more confident in being Christian. Then they realize that as they are being led into a new oven, that they are there simply because they are or were Jewish. There is no escaping the wrath of God, when one choses to lose the bounds of Judaism.

  6. Cody Flecker I agree with you in that man yJewish people lose their heritage when they become secularized, or Americanized as you put it. it's important for Jews to always remember all that atrocities that have been done to them just for being Jewish. I also know that when a Jewish person individially becomes a believer in Jesus the Jewish Messiah, he becomes more Jewish, not less.

  7. What is Dustin Hoffman thinking? Has he wimped out on his heritage, and his people? Doesn't he realize that 1. Muslims hate Jews, and 2. His wimpy excuse for not attending pegs him as spineless? He needed to say "I am a Jew, and I will not attend not have anything to do with haters of Israel!" I don't think I will be supporting his products any longer.

  8. old actors, like hoffman, no longer bankable will do anything regardless of how low and disgusting to retain even a shard of their former career. it is pitiful. givig support to islamic blood libels, jew hatred and a faked "documentary" is this guy's legacy. personally, I will never again look at anything dustin hoffman has done. I won't miss him.

  9. My parents, who were murdered in Sobibor and Lublin, taught me.
    that to be a Jew is to be a Mensch. Hoffman is just an actor.

  10. Alice Lemos says:

    Hollyweird = useful idiots.

  11. Ethan Perks says:

    He's like too many today. Jewish by birth. Leftist by conviction. What the lefts infatuation is wth Islamists escapes me. (? Leftists and Islamists hate Jews and Israel?)

  12. Ethan Perks says:

    Mark S. Devenow;nce saw him on late nite TV afer making 'Hook". He claimed he based the charscter on the most evil man he know. Get ready for it. William F Buckley!

  13. It is true and I am not Jewish and find myself always defending Israel.It is hard for me to understand the mentality. They just shoot themselves in the foot.

  14. Alan Kardon says:

    Courage or conscience, I guess Dustin Hoffman doesn't have either. Rabbi Beerman is a total embarrassment to his title. I guess he does not believe that Gaza is constantly firing rockets at Israel. Gaza also does not believe that Israel has a right to exist. Maybe he should start reading current events instead of only reading the torah which is ancient history.

  15. Alan Kardon says:

    Courage or conscience, I guess Dustin Hoffman doesn't have either. Rabbi Beerman is a total embarrassment to his title. I guess he does not believe that Gaza is constantly firing rockets at Israel. Gaza also does not believe that Israel has a right to exist. Maybe he should start reading current events instead of only reading the torah which is ancient history.

  16. Alan Kardon says:

    You give the Rabbi credit by calling him a USEFUL idiot. He is totlly useless. As far as idiot I would not insult the idiots of this world by comparing them to him.
    I think Dustin Hoffman must be hanging out with Mel Gibson.

  17. Alan Kardon says:

    You give the Rabbi credit by calling him a USEFUL idiot. He is totally useless. As far as an idiot I would not insult the idiots of this world by comparing them to him.
    I think Dustin Hoffman must be hanging out with Mel Gibson.

  18. Alan Kardon says:

    You give the Rabbi credit by calling him a USEFUL idiot. He is totally useless. As far as an idiot I would not insult the idiots of this world by comparing them to him.
    I think Dustin Hoffman must be hanging out with Mel Gibson.

  19. Harold Taback says:

    Well past due for Israel to take to court slanerous false propaganda against Israel and Jews.

  20. Harold Taback says:

    Well past due for Israel to take to court slanerous false propaganda against Israel and Jews.

  21. Marsha Roth says:

    I think Ms. Worlock meant 91 year old "USELESS" idiot! I can't fathom this Rabbi's position on this. However, regarding Hoffman, I think that someone in Dustin Hoffman's representative clan pandered to the Liberal Left. I honestly think, Dustin Hoffman did not know what this was all about until the time came and he was responsible for showing up. Then, he saw it and could not, in all good conscience, do it, but had to say something equaling "nice" to them. After all, it is the "Fine Arts" where people are given artistic freedom as did this Film Maker, whether we like it or not. The Film Industry is all about Freedom of Speech and Ideas. Whoever arranged this should be flogged! And so should the 91 year old ignorant Rabbi. I would do it personally! However, the Rabbi has a Higher Power to explain his behavior to.

  22. Jools Ferguson says:

    I used to like Dustin Hoffman. Not any more after reading this!

  23. Jools Ferguson says:

    He DIDN'T have to SAY anything, except apologize for not attending, due to "illness", via a third party – not the ancient Rabbi, who at 91 should probably retire from ALL public life!

  24. Hala Alsalman says:

    Wow there's a lot of hate in these comments. I attended the MPAC event in question and was so inspired to see Jews and Muslims coming together in the name of unity instead of the usual divisiveness we see in America. The Rabbi is a good friend of Dr. Hathout, a very well-respected and progressive Imam in California who is the senior advisor of MPAC. Can't we all just get along already?

  25. American Jews are not blind to what is murder. Israel is going ever so dangerously down a path that will isolate themselves from the rest of the world. The wall you put up around you will serve as your prison one day, at your own hands you destroy what you have built. The world is watching your violence and we will not fund it anymore.

  26. His co-star from Midnight Cowboy , Jon Voight is completely different. Very pro Israel. You can add Hoffman in with his co-star from the film Last Chance Harvey, Emma Thompson as another actor whose films I will not go to see.

  27. Marsha Roth says:

    Agreed!

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